COVID-19 Industry Response Survey: Week Seven Results

by Rick Yates, on May 12, 2020

Results image (3)
Thank you to everyone who took part in the penultimate week of our COVID-19 response survey. We appreciate your continued participation and are hopeful that these results are having a meaningful impact on how you're working during this time.







Here are the results for the week commencing 04/05/2020:

1. How busy has your business been this week compared to last week?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 09.05.33

  Last week
This week
A lot busier than last week: 12% 7%
Slightly busier than last week: 28% 35%
About as busy as last week: 29% 35%
Slightly quieter than last week: 17% 23%
A lot quieter than last week: 14% 0%

Last week we saw a rise in busyness, and unfortunately this week we've seen a fall.

With the instability of the world right now, it's expected that the industry is going to see ups and downs. We'd rather everyone be busy, but that will come back in time.

Any slow periods are just a chance to work on projects that you've been meaning to get around to (see Q13 onwards). You can also use this opportunity to upskill your team. Even furloughed workers are allowed to do training!

2. Have any of your customers cancelled or paused their service with you?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 09.12.01

  Last week This week
Yes: 35% 32%
No: 65% 68%

Happy to see this number fall, even if it is only by 3%!

3. Have your customers requested services additional to their regular packages THIS WEEK compared to LAST WEEK? (i.e. if they requested additional Remote Working setup last week but nothing additional this week, the answer will be no)

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 09.13.56

  Last week This week
Yes: 25% 19%
No: 75% 81%

Things seem to have really gone quiet this week, giving us the slowest percentage of additional service requests since this survey began.

4. If your customers are in need of any additional services, what are they?

Remote working support has finally left these answers, with data security and cloud backup becoming frequent topics of discussion.

As a solution, why not try out a quick, free 1-2-1 demo of Redstor? An MSP friendly cloud security and backup service, it's the perfect fit for all of these problems.

5. What have your customers mostly needed from you this week?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 09.41.18

  Last week
This week
Setting up remote working: 8% 0%
Data security/backup/recovery: 5% 6%
Access to hardware: 5% 3%
Business as usual/service desk: 78% 85%
Other (please specify): 4% 6%

Everyone is set up with remote working now, so it has well and truly fallen off this week. There's no question here that business as usual is what the majority of clients are looking for.

6. What technical services do you think your customers are going to need as the isolation period continues that they may not be aware of yet? Please select top 3

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 09.50.06

  Last week
This week
Staff monitoring software - activity/key loggers: 30% 15%
More suitable remote connect/VPN facilities: 47% 33%
Moving data backups off physical sites and into cloud: 27% 26%
Recovering data on a live basis remotely: 2% 11%
Enhanced service desk packages: 17% 33%
Proactive guidance and recommendations on IT strategy: 72% 89%
Other (please specify): 13% 11%

While there is competition in among the minority, MSPs largely agree that their clients need proactive guidance and recommendations on IT strategy.

7. Has it been necessary for you to place any staff on furlough?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.06.51

  Last week This week
Yes: 34% 40%
No: 66% 60%

These numbers have fluctuated over the weeks, taking a bad turn this time. 

8. If no, do you expect to place staff on furlough next week?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.11.28

  Last week This week
Yes: 5% 4%
No: 65% 61%
Possibly, not sure yet: 30% 35%

At least these results are moving in a positive direction, no matter how small. 

With the changes in government policy this week, it'll be interesting to see if there's a dramatic shift in these figures next week.

9. What kind of advice would you find most useful to help you and your customers businesses during the Coronavirus crisis? (multiple choice)

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.15.28

  Last week
This week
Staff productivity during remote working: 31% 23%
Data security and compliance for remote environments: 11% 13%
Insight on how other IT Service Providers are faring during the crisis: 52% 47%
Ways to diversify your business to create new revenue streams: 55% 63%
Other (please specify): 3% 0%

Once again, much the same as last week - insight and business diversification out on top, with staff productivity not far behind.

10. Do you currently feel concerned for the future of your business as a result of Coronavirus?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.33.06

  Last week This week
No, I think we will grow as a result: 31% 29%
No, I think we will neither grow nor shrink: 25% 29%
Yes, this may have a negative effect on my business: 41% 42%
Yes, I am worried that the Coronavirus crisis will put us out of business: 3% 0%

Confidence has dropped again, but at least no one that completed the survey this week is worried that they will be put out of business.

11. Currently, what is your top concern regarding Coronavirus in relation to your business?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.37.50

  Last week
This week
That my customers will not be able to pay me: 52% 49%
That an overwhelming number of my staff will become sick and need to self isolate: 5% 3%
That I cannot keep up with demand: 6% 3%
That there is a shortage of incoming new business: 35% 45%
Other (please specify): 2% 0%

Cash liquidity and new business are still on top, with the results remaining fairly similar. 

To find new business, MSPs have the option to sign up to IT Provider Hub. This directory of IT Providers has been made free to join during the crisis and is a great place for new customers to find your business.

12. Are you experiencing challenges with your customers not paying their bills this week?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.45.25

  Last week This week
Yes, I have customers who have asked for extensions or not paid on time: 38% 35%
No, everyone is still paying as usual: 62% 65%

After a sharp rise last week, we're glad to see that this has dropped again slightly. 

13. Are you using this quiet period to work on any longer term strategic programmes/plans for your IT services business?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 10.58.17

  Last week This week
Yes: 75% 70%
No, we have enough going on: 14% 13%
No, but we probably should be: 11% 17%

While quarantine can have a negative impact on motivation, we believe that MSPs can take on any new project they set their minds to and still succeed.

14. If yes, what kind of project are you undertaking?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 11.10.29

  Last week
This week
Optimising operational working processes: 39% 52%
Improving our ability to create new business leads: 25% 26%
Looking at options to diversify our products and services: 22% 13%
Evaluating new technology tools: 9% 4%
Other (please specify): 5% 4%

Optimising operational processes seems like the most attainable goal for most MSPs, so it's no surprise that it has taken an even bigger lead again this week.

15. If no, what kind of project do you think would be most beneficial to undertake at the moment?

Screenshot 2020-05-12 at 11.19.11

  Last week
This week
Optimising operational working processes: 20% 35%
Improving our ability to create new business leads: 42% 35%
Looking at options to diversify our products and services: 20% 12%
Evaluating new technology tools: 11% 18%
Other (please specify): 6% 0%

Alongside optimising operational processes, MSPs recognise that improving their ability to create new business leads should be a vital part of their growth plan.

Thank you once again to everyone who participated in week seven of our MSP survey. Next week is the final survey. We hope you will all take part and have made use of the data that we've found.

To be the first to hear when we release our next survey and the subsequent results, follow @zedsphere across social media or sign up for email alerts below.

Recommended resources:

THE TECH TRIBE: The MSP Owners Guide to Surviving & Thriving in Uncertain Times

RICHARD TUBB: The COVID-19 MSP Resource Page

FREE EBOOK: The No-Nonsense Guide to Sales and Marketing for IT Providers

MSP FRIENDLY VPN: Perimeter 81


Topics:MSP Growth AcademyIndustry Survey Results

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